In an open letter on ESPN.com and interview with Jeremy Schaap, former Bucs defensive end Ryan Russell told his story of playing in the NFL while simultaneously hiding his sexuality from the outside world.

The Dallas Cowboys originally drafted Russell in the fifth round of the 2015 NFL draft out of Purdue. The pass-rusher played one game with Dallas before being released and signed to the Bucs’ practice squad, eventually spending the next two seasons in Tampa Bay. In 2017, Russell played in 14 games, starting six, and totaling 20 tackles, three sacks and nine quarterback hits.

Russell missed the 2018 season after a shoulder injury he sustained with the Bucs in 2017 and is now looking for his return to the NFL, this time with nothing to hide.

“I want the next part of my career — and life – steeped in trust and honesty,” Russell said. “During the season you spend more time with your team than with your own family; truth and honesty are the cornerstones of a winning culture. My truth is that I’m a talented football player, a damn good writer, a loving son, an overbearing brother, a caring friend, a loyal lover, and a bisexual man.”

Read the full story here, as told by Russell, here.

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About the Author: Taylor Jenkins

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seat26
1 year ago

Refreshing honesty.

twspin
Reply to  seat26
1 year ago

Nothing..REFRESHING about this at all.

deeznuts
1 year ago

LOL

deeznuts
Reply to  deeznuts
1 year ago

….. Hes a butt pirate 😂

(I couldn’t resist)

But really, this isn’t news. Straight fb players don’t announce their orientation to the world…if they did, they’d get made fun of too one way or another

fredster
1 year ago

Ummm ok and who cares? Hurting for news or what? Lol

twspin
1 year ago

I was told as a kid when you don’t have something nice to say about somebody or something..You should keep your mouth closed. #&^%??#!!!!!! Ok, I’m done here.

Spitfire
1 year ago

Good for him. No one should have to be afraid to be who they are and say it out loud. Anyone that would have an issue with him saying that has an issue with themselves.

Horse
1 year ago

I’m happy he feels good about himself and I hope he can achieve his dreams; unfortunately it’s going to be tough to convince the majority of fans who watch this sport. For me I enjoy the sport and I don’t care what gender one might be.

twspin
Reply to  Horse
1 year ago

NOPE. He sure as hell can’t convince me!!!

Go Bucs 72
1 year ago

Gerald will feel much better after he comes out as well.

drdneast
1 year ago

Relax twspin, i doubt if moron is his type.j

GrayBalls
Reply to  drdneast
1 year ago

With all that apparent aggression on the matter, I’d have to say spin is hiding something. It’s cool, bud, we don’t care.

twspin
Reply to  GrayBalls
1 year ago

And waiting for one to..make..that wrong move..LOL

twspin
Reply to  drdneast
1 year ago

I’ll take that over the gender change..anyday of the week. Read Corinthians there sir.

destinjohnny
1 year ago

So if u sleep with dudes it is news?
Also if u sleep with guys you are gay and if that’s your thing that’s your thing. I along with most people don’t care or have a reaction either way.

wish-in-one-hand
1 year ago

If i can be open and honest here, thing is that i don’t get about coming out with your sexuality is why do you feel like you have to share it, it’s sexual preference. I don’t tell people what my personal kinks are or what gets me going, you share that with your partner not the world. I could care less what you do behind closed doors.

Telling your team mates your personal kinks doesn’t win games. We all have stuff in our closet, do we have to tell everyone?

wish-in-one-hand
1 year ago

*couldn’t

SenileSenior
1 year ago

In this day and age, who cares?

Doesn’t have much to do with sports.

JordyNYC
1 year ago

I applaud the guy. I live in a very progressive bubble of a city in NYC so this kind of news doesn’t phase me as much. But it’s news nonetheless because how many male athletes have openly come out as gay or bi? Not a whole lot. There are still areas of this country where people are afraid to come out due to hateful retaliations. Some here may not like this or think it’s news, but its 2019 and although the LGBQT community is nothing new there’s still been a big hush over sports when it comes to athletes coming… Read more »

Bucfannomatter
1 year ago

Haha. Dude was a mediocre player, who had a couple of splash plays. We give two craps about the rest. I don’t care if you like to dress up as Mary Poppins at night, when you are at your house. That’s your problem. In 2019… Think I speak for most. Grow a pair and be yourself.